Smart Distributor Incentive Ideas in Mechanical Hub Magazine

Are you looking for distributor incentive ideas to maximize profitability in your channel? Distributor incentive programs can be a powerful tool to increase sales, build channel partner loyalty, and accomplish business objectives. But distribution channels can be complicated, with a lot of moving parts. Many manufacturers and distributors are plagued by poor communication, incomplete data, and a lack of personalization with their channel partners. Let’s look into some of the ways you can avoid the pitfalls of planning a distributor incentive program.

Distributor Incentive Ideas and Best Practices:

Last month, incentive expert Mark Herbert was featured in Mechanical Hub. Keep scrolling for a summary of the distributor incentive ideas he shared!

Analyze Your Audience

Mark Herbert writes:

“The success of your distributor sales incentives and rebate programs depends on being able to personalize your marketing to your distributor sales reps (DSRs).”

Mark goes on to suggest using your dealer incentive program registration process to collect accurate contact, firmographic, and demographic data. This tactic ensures that you have a more complete picture of your target audience. You can use this audience data to improve your channel sales and marketing strategies.

Align Promotions with Organizational Goals

Mark Herbert recommends having specific, measurable objectives for your distributor incentive program. Setting up multiple promotions by margin, region, or product type allows you to maximize the strategic benefit of your program.

Strategically Select Rewards

Your reward selection should scale to the performance of your participants. “After all,” says Mark Herbert, “you wouldn’t want to award VIP accounts and part-time customers with the same amount of value.”

Regularly Communicate with Your Distributor Sales Reps

Incentive rewards build engagement and personalize your relationships with DSRs. Use every chance you can to communicate with them through your distributor incentive program. Your distributor incentive program provides new touchpoints like:

  • Rewards website content.
  • Site announcements
  • Monthly statements.
  • Seasonal emails.
  • Promotional marketing emails.
  • SMS and push notifications.

Track Distributor Incentive KPIs

Even the best distributor incentive ideas will have limited impact if you’re unable to accurately track and analyze your program data. To quote Mark Herbert: “It’s important to have software in place to monitor these KPIs and capitalize on opportunities for cross-selling, up-selling and reengagement with your DSRs.”

Offer Sales Enablement for Eligible Products

Distributor sales reps sell what they know from brands they trust. Make it easy for DSRs to sell your products to dealers, contractors, and wholesalers by providing sales enablement. Mark Herbert recommends:

  • Creating interactive quizzes and training.
  • Requiring qualification courses and training for eligibility to earn rewards.
  • Using reward program communications to educate your DSRs on your products.
  • Rewarding DSRs for attending tradeshows and conferences

Provide Convenient Platforms for Claims Submissions

Distributor sales reps spend a large portion of their workday in the field. Using mobile-ready document attachment tools makes it easy and for DSRs to submit sales claims verification. Doing so will improve the quality of the data you receive, make your program more rewarding for DSRs, and streamline admin functions.

Switch Things Up to Keep Your Program Fresh

Even the best incentive programs can get stale and lose their effectiveness over time. Mark Herbert recommends switching things up to keep your program fresh. Bonus points, limited-time promotions, and gamification are all distributor incentive ideas that keep your program exciting for the long haul.

Seek Feedback and Analyze Results

Chances are your DSRs have plenty of good ideas for your distributor incentive program. Don’t hesitate to ask them for advice on how to improve your program! In addition to surveys, use program data and analytics to make decision to continue to improve your program.

Make sure to check out the full article!